Hearing-impaired people cannot hear sounds well. How do they “hear” words?
Many hearing-impaired people use sign language. They talk with their hands. Two hearing-impaired people can talk to each other. They both use sign language. Sometimes a person who can hear and interprets for hearing-impaired people. The person listens to someone talking, and then he or she makes hand signs. There are two kinds of hand sign. Some signs are for whole words. For example, there is one hand sign for the word love. There are hand signs for different actions, things, and ideas. Some of the signs are very easy, for example, the sign for eat, milk, and house. You can see what they mean. Others are more difficult, for example, the sign for star, egg, and week.
The second kind of hand sign is fingerspelling. In fingerspelling, there is a sign for every letter in the alphabet. For example, to fingerspell the word love, a person makes four different signs. It is much slower to fingerspell, but is useful for signing names and technical words. People can use both kinds of hand signs together.
Each country has its own sign language. For example, American Sign Language (ASL) is very different from British Sign Language. Using sign language is almost like a dance. The whole body talks. Sign languages are beautiful.